Java Code Generators – A short rant

Java is known to be a verbose language and the situation worsens when you step into bloated enterprise java world. You need to write tons of code and configure a lot of JXXX to make your simple webapp work. Though the situation is improving in the recent years with the introduction of convention over configuration approach and also of annotation based configurations but still, if you compare the amount of code required for a functional webapp in Java then it would be at least 2X to 4X more than that of similar webapps written in other frameworks like Django or RoR.

A lot of java frameworks and IDEs tries to hide this complexity by generating code – from simple getters and setters to entire DAO layers and what not – that might give small productivity gains in the beginning but eventually every additional line of code in your project, either hand-written or generated by a state of art code generator, someone will need to maintain and evolve it, which according to some is almost 90% of the total software costs.

Thats why framework like Play feels like fresh air and it seems to be making inroads in the bloated enterprise java world.

Humanizing the time difference ( in django )

django.contrib.humanize is a set of Django template filters that adds human touch to data. It provides naturalday filter that formats date to ‘yesterday’, ‘today’ or ‘tomorrow’ when applicable.

A similar requirement which the humanize pacakge does not address is to display time difference with this human touch. so here is a snippet that does so.

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